Florida Department of Education eyes new rule for students with ‘math deficiency’

WCJB | By WCJB Staff | August 1, 2023

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCJB) – The state Department of Education is proposing a rule that would help determine when students have a “substantial math deficiency,” which could lead to needing such things as individual education plans.

The proposal, published Monday by the department, would apply to students in kindergarten through fourth grade. Under the proposal, students who meet certain criteria would be deemed to have a substantial math deficiency.

Students would have to score below the 10th percentile “based upon screening, diagnostic assessments, progress monitoring, other classroom data, or statewide assessments.”

Alternatively, students could be designated with a deficiency if “through teacher observation, the student has demonstrated minimum skill levels for mathematics competencies in one or more of the areas of emphasis for that grade level.” For example, one area of emphasis for kindergarten students would be “measuring, comparing, and categorizing objects according to various attributes, including their two- and three-dimensional shapes.”

For fourth-grade students, an area of emphasis would be “developing an understanding for interpreting data to include mode, median and range.”

The proposed rule says students found to have math deficiencies “must be covered by a federally required student plan” such as an individual education plan, or IEP. An IEP is a “written plan for the special education of a student with a disability,” according to a document on the department’s website.

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